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Highland/Fulton: St. Francis goes even bigger with annual Christmas bazaar

By Chuck Gait, chuck.gait@gmail.com 301-854-0867

6:21 AM EDT, November 1, 2012

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St. Francis Catholic Church in Fulton is having its annual Christmas bazaar on Nov. 9 and 10. The doors are open from 6 to 9 p.m. on Friday evening and again on Saturday from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m.

Every year, this event gets a little bigger and this year is no exception. Connie Jones, a parishioner, emailed that the "bazaar runneth over."

Scheduled are 26 vendors and crafters, various themed basket raffles, fresh Christmas door wreaths and greens, a fantastically huge silent auction, a voluminous used book sale, a bake sale, a "cake walk", hot food, cold and hot beverages and even a visit from the jolly old elf himself, Santa.

The church is at 8300 Old Columbia Pike behind the Park-and-Ride. Hope to see you there.

If you like fresh Florida citrus fruit, then you might be interested in the River Hill High School Music Boosters winter fruit sale, going on right now.

By purchasing your fruit in this manner, you'll be helping out a River Hill High School music student because 50 percent of the profit goes to his/her music account. The easiest way for you to participate is to go to the website: http://www.riverhillmusic.org and follow the links for Music Booster/Citrus Fruit.

Red grapefruit, navel oranges and tangerines can be purchased in 20 or 40 lb. boxes. You can also select a variety pack in the same weights. Orders are due Nov. 2 with a tentative pick-up date of Nov. 17.

For more specific information, go to the web-site above or give Ann Hagen a call at 301-854-3650 or send her an email at wakegirl85@yahoo.com.

With Christmas being just around the corner, Connie Ballenger, a member of the Glen Mar United Methodist Church, would like to invite you all to the fifth annual Walk to Bethlehem, an outdoor re-enactment of the Christmas story.

It takes place Nov. 30 through Dec. 2, from 5 to 8 p.m. at the church, 4701 New Cut Road in Ellicott City. Feel free to drop in anytime during those hours and be prepared to spend at least an hour on your "journey".

Afterwards, you will be able to go inside the church and sing carols, led by Glen Mar choir members, visit a temple scene and peruse a marketplace as it may have looked in Jesus' day.

For more information, go to the church's website at http://www.glenmarumc.org or call 410-465-4995 ext. 204.

Marie Anantua and her Earth and Science students at Reservoir High School are dedicated to "improving the environmental footprint of the school" and "have worked tirelessly to make Reservoir High School a green school."

Marie is the sponsor of the S.A.V.E. club (Students Against the Violation of the Environment) and club members stayed after school to work on cleaning up the garden.

They are Grace Amoh, Alexandra Barrett, Sarah Blough, Fiona Ball, Ashley Gates, Maria Lejano, Toyosi Rayemo, Jade Reinholtz, Autumn Shackleford, Louie Schaab, Brian Shouse, Maxi Wardcantori, and Theodore J. Willard.

Maria came to Reservoir from New York, where she was born and raised and attended all 12 years of primary and secondary grade schools. She is married with two kids, the eldest a recent graduate of Reservoir.

As any chef will tell you, fresh is always the best, and Madge Johnson, the Culinary Science Teacher at Reservoir High School, is passing on that adage to her students by helping them grow and maintain an herb garden at the school.

Madge came to her calling by way of a sales training job at a major department store after graduating from college. She found that this choice of careers was leaving her unfulfilled, that something was missing in her life.

One day, during lunch, on a whim, she walked over to the local Board of Education office and asked to speak to someone about a teaching position. She got the standard "Please leave your name and contact information, fill out an application, attach a resume and send them in. Have a good day".

As she was waiting at the elevator to leave, the secretary came running up to her and asked if she could come back — the office had just gotten calls from two schools seeking teachers.

Madge found out through her first teaching experience that "books can't teach you everything you need to know". She was a 21-year-old novice teacher coming into a classroom filled with 18- and 19-year-olds. They told her that 'if I wanted to survive, I needed more 'backbone and toughness.' "

As an adult role model, Madge wants to inspire her students to grow and be successful.